Ugh, it responded: The non-anti-racist from my previous post attempted a clapback . . . and failed. So, I showed them HOW WE DO.
In the post immediately prior to this one, I logged a response to my Tumblr reblog of a video clip of a BJ Novak story told on late night TV, along with my thoughts and responses to it. Some rando, internet white supremacist came for me with gaslighting and virtue-signaling and concern-trolling. All the BEST -ings, in my well-versed opinion.
As the title here states, I clapped back. They also tried to clap back at me. I guess? Buuuuuut . . . unsurprisingly, it was—
— a thing that happened on the internet.
Here’s said thing:
And here, copied and pasted, is my final response to this tiresome non-anti-racist. I suppose they only bother because I’m so willing to engage. Because. . . .
Yeeeeeaaah . . . I gotta ease-up on that. I’m only giving them attention they otherwise wouldn’t get and couldn’t keep:
Your anger didn’t cross my mind and doesn’t interest me now, nor does your passive-aggressive and sarcastic advice. Folks who only care about the rights, equality and equity, and justice, for those who say nice things and tone-police themselves don’t actually care about those things or those people. Folks believe being scrupulously careful of the feelings and experiences of others, but who DON’T care about the feelings and experiences of anyone else, don’t care about people at all.
The people who are more offended by a swear word, than they are by the fact that their callous dismissal of the TRUTH AND EXPERIENCE of someone’s pained and hurt response to a story from years ago — one which would have ended TRAGICALLY had that someone been in the shoes of the storyteller, a truth that is not only truth but likely FACT in the wake of all of history and current events — and who suggest that tone-policing is the thing that movements for equity and justice need, rather than, y’know, simply an honest call for equity and justice. . . .
Those people don’t care about people at all. At least not about people whose experiences and lives, history and culture, differ from theirs. They will tone-police, concern-troll, and virtue-signal, and tell the world they’re helping.
Lack of empathy, I believe, is the phrase.
In any event, I see you. And so do other people, whether you acknowledge THAT, or not. You’ve made yourself, your character, and your concerns/priorities crystal-clear. And, THAT said —
You don’t have to like what I say and I don’t have to like what you say — a right we’ve both exercised in these reblogs. But we SHOULD be defending each other’s right to say it. It’s our right to say anything at all — we have freedom of expression. But not freedom from consequences or from what others think.
THAT ALSO SAID, I think you are NOT an anti-racist. You may take that as you like, though I doubt you know anything or care about anti-racism. And having come to that conclusion, based on your response here, I could not care less about anything else you suggest or claim to opine. Your implied priorities of preserving the funny in a not-really-funny story . . . over laughing, if one feels the humor, yet also acknowledging the truth that goes along with the story for many people (had the teen been Black, he’d still be in prison for fraud, or dead) is more than enough of a red flag for me.
By your replies, you care more about polite tones and keeping an iffy story of fraud funny than about the truth of inequality and injustice in this world. You care more about your comfort zone of funny than about the pain and frustrations other feel — to the point that you can’t even sympathize, or simply walk away in silence. You had to come IN MY SPACE and spew your free expression as a response to my very real pain and sense of disenfranchisement as a Black person in America. You literally chastised someone you don’t even know for pointing out one person’s funny can be another person’s sad as if my observation was the first and only time THAT had ever happened or was ever true.
You chastised me for stating the truth of things you didn’t want to read or acknowledge, at a time when you ESPECIALLY didn’t want to read or acknowledge them. I had to pay for nudging you out of your comfort zone.
Because that’s what’s wrongest with this world: people who point out what’s wrong with this world, at moments when you’re trying to laugh at old-ass stories from late-night TV.
“Fair enough,” as non-anti-racists seem to say quite often.
I’ll defend your right to say whatever you want — because that’s what I expect of everyone in return and because I think it’s preferable for me and for everyone else to be able to quickly spot an non-anti-racist (and other undesirable antis or -ists) when we see one. So, please, do, keep critiquing those who point out injustice whenever you feel like it’s ruined a story or a joke or a mood. Please keep letting us know who you are, what your priorities are likely to be, and where you will turn up.
(AN ASIDE: My offer of those links and resources regarding getting involved in anti-racism direct action and support still stand. If that’s something you’d like to discuss or know more about, even if not from me, I can point you in the right direction. To people and groups who might be able to sugar-coat the fact that not everyone’s reaction to every story will be the same as yours because not everyone is you. Not everyone is BJ Novak, with the privilege of committing identity fraud, admitting it on TV even years later, and not going to jail or to the grave. And the difference is mostly racial, with a dash of classsism thrown in. But maybe there are people who can make anti-racism MATTER to you, more than the enshrining and pedestaling of teenage identity theft matters. I just know that I’m not it — I have no talent for soft-pedaling, tone-policing, and bullshitting when it comes to stark differences in treatment and qualities of life, which have cost the lives and futures of generations . . . and will of generations to come. I am not the one to hold ANYONE’S hand regarding and during the battle to end that.)
As I said, if rights and justice only matter for those of whom you approve, those you like, and those you understand . . . then those things and people in general don’t matter to you at all. Thus, we have no common ground and nothing further to discuss. Peace, and good luck.
(By which I mean: Go live your best life or whatever, and don’t reply. Because I won’t bother to respond again.)
And that, for my intents and purposes, is that. I’m tired of covering brick walls with my skull-blood. There are REAL battles out there — battles worth fighting and winning, where the stakes are little things like justice, equality, equity, a more unified and cohesive world that CARES about everyone in it.
I’ll gladly devote as much time as I can to that and the various movements around it. But this banal, pathetic shit and the people who peddle it in my direction can go kick rocks for keeps. The Movements and all their peeps — me included?
“Borat Very Nice Great Success.” Dozzah, Imgur.com. June 16, 2015. https://imgur.com/XJyemeI
Also used: Various gifs grabbed from Giphy.com and THE INTERNET, and used in previous articles of mine.
[Referenced but not used]
“B.J. Novak Stole Someone’s Identity When He Was 14.” The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, YouTube. May 12, 2016. [3:44] As a teenager, B.J. Novak wanted a fake I.D. As an adult, he’s confident the statute of limitations has expired. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UGGHbfad-Nc